News that annual CT lung scans can reduce the risk of lung cancer death among former and current heavy smokers was celebrated by national heath officials this month. A major government study found the screening scans saved the life of one person for every 300 current or former smokers who were scanned.But now cancer and screening experts are worried that the limited findings will be used by private screening centers to promote the test to a broader group than was studied. That, in turn, could lead to thousands of unnecessary lung scans, causing excess radiation exposure and unnecessary biopsies and surgery.
By TARA PARKER-POPE
National Lung Cancer Screening Trial: